Items We Adore: Product Picks for the Week

We are all spending a lot of time indoors and that means we need ways to stay cozy and busy between our brief trips into the cold and two feet of snow for necessities. We put together a list of items we think you’ll find useful for long winter days spent inside. Here are this week’s Items We Adore: Product Picks for the Week.

cuddle-bedThe Soft Plush Cat Cuddle Bed provides luxurious comfort for your pet. This deep bed with raised sides keeps your beloved feline warm and cozy. Cushioned on the bottom and sides for extra softness, it invites your cat to curl up and rest. 18″ dia. x 11″H. Polyester and polyfill. Machine care. Imported.

plush-throw

Incredibly soft and comfortable, this 50″ x 60″ Plush Micro-Velvet Throw is a great gift everyone will enjoy. The luxurious throw adds an extra layer of warmth to wherever you’re lounging. Its silky feel makes it even cozier. Polyester. Machine care. Imported.

adult-coloring-book

The plain, complex outlines give you the freedom to creatively add color and bring the images in this Intricate Designs Coloring Book to life. It features 31 intricate designs on acid-free, art-grade paper. Each page is micro-perforated for easy tearing and sharing. 9-3/8″W x 9″L. Softcover, 64 pages.

vest-jeans

Dress your baby fashionably at a value price! Infant’s 3-Pc. Vest and Jeans Outfit offers a similar look for boys and girls. The Boys’ outfit has a screen-printed T-shirt and a puffy vest and jeans, both with embroidered accents. The Girls’ outfit has appliques, embroidery on the back pocket and rhinestone embellishments on the T-shirt and jeans, along with a puffy vest. All the jeans have an elastic back, button fly and 2 back pockets. T-shirts and jeans, cotton and polyester. Vests, polyester. Machine care. Imported.

infinity-scarf

 

Show your team spirit with an officially licensed NFL Reversible Infinity Scarf. This reversible scarf features both team colors, one on each side. Prominently adorning each side is a bold square patch of the team name and logo. 6″W x 35-1/2″L. Acrylic. Imported.

Spring Refresh: Kitchen Hacks to Make Cooking and Cleaning a Little Easier

Cleaning-KitchenIt’s time to start thinking about giving your house a spring refresh. It’s a lot to take on, so we thought we’d start with the most complicated room in the house: the kitchen. Here are some kitchen hacks to make cooking and cleaning a little easier.

Dairy Dilemmas Dairy seems go bad a little too quickly, but there are a couple tricks to extend the lives of some items.

  • Dry Cheese: spread a little butter on the cut end to keep it from drying out (only works for hard cheeses).
  • Cottage Cheese & Sour Cream: to keep these items from getting moldy, once the seal’s been broken, turn the closed container upside when you return it to the refrigerator to block air from moving in — air is one of the things that contributes to spoilage.
  • Milk: Don’t store your milk in the refrigerator door. With all of the opening and closing of the door, the temperature fluctuates too much for something as delicate as dairy (and eggs); the door is best for long-lasting items like condiments.

Dishwasher Difficulties Dishwashers work really hard to clean up food and stains from your dinnerware — and some of that gunk tends to build up in the appliance: Here are a couple ways to clean it:Dishwasher

  • Vinegar: Toss a cup of vinegar in the bottom of your empty dishwasher. Run it.
  • Powdered Lemonade (unsweetened): Add the powder to your soap dispenser. Run the empty dishwasher.

The vinegar and lemonade work the same way to clean out extra food particles. If your dishwasher still isn’t cleaning your dishes, you may have to seek out a dishwasher repairman for help.

Messy Microwave Cleaning the microwave isn’t hard, but it’s annoying. To simplify it, try these methods:

  • Lemon & Water: Fill a microwave-safe bowl with water and a cut up lemon. Place it in the microwave and run it on high for about four minutes. Keep the door closed to let it steam up for two minutes and then wipe it clean.
  • Sponge Sense: Wet a sponge (well-soaked, but squeeze off a little extra water). Place it in the microwave and cook on high for two minutes. Let it steam up for a minute. Make sure the sponge is cool enough to touch and then wipe the microwave out.

Lemon Freshness Lemons and their peels do so much more than flavor our food! Here are a couple of their best uses:

  • Salt & Lemon: Use lemon half sprinkled with salt as a scrubber for your cutting board or marble to clean and disinfect them (it’s also the formula for a rust remover). Toss the used rinds in the garbage disposal and run it to refresh the appliance.
  • Repurpose Rinds: When you use a lemon for a recipe, rather than tossing it in the trash, toss it in your slow cooker with water and let it simmer to scent the air (you can toss in old tea bags and apple cores, too).


Vexing Vegetables 
Vegetables are susceptible to food waste because thekitchen-caddyy go bad faster than other foods. Here are a few ways to extend their lives.

  • Dark Leafy Greens & Herbs: If the leaves on your kale or cilantro (and similar produce) start to wilt, don’t throw them out, cut off the ends of their stalks and stick them in a glass of water to perk them up.
  • Paper Towels: If you’re storing fruit in your crisper drawer, stick a layer of paper towels in the bottom. The towels absorb the excess moisture that causes fruit to rot.

When you start your spring organizing, let LTD help you get things sorted! Whether you’re looking for tips for cleaning faster or you need new storage containers to get your bedroom organized, look to LTD for clever ideas and practical products.

Valentine’s Day: 5 Ways to Show Your Dog a Little Love

puppyEverywhere you turn, our winter landscape is peppered with hearts and cupids to remind us to show a little love. For Valentine’s Day, that love doesn’t have to be romantic love — we can express our affection for everyone we care about — including our cuddly canines. If you’re looking for ideas to show your pup appreciation, here are 5 ways to show your dog a little love.

Dog Doctor We know we need to go to the dentist and the doctor regularly — even when we feel OK — just to make sure everything is working properly and to maintain good health. Our furry friends need the same kind of healing attention, particularly since our pups can’t tell us if they’re stomach is upset or they have aches and pains. Vets see all types of animals every day so they can hear, see and feel the things that are off that pet owners can’t. A trip to the vet once a year as the Humane Society recommends may save you money with preventive care and save your pup undue pain.gnawsome

Husky Hound Just like humans, to stay healthy between doctor visits, dogs need to eat right and get lots of exercise. Your vet should be able to tell you just how much and what kind of food your dog should be eating to maintain a healthy weight. At home, just do your duty by letting your pup get the kind of running in that he wants to do. If you have a dog that isn’t into exercise, don’t force him to take long walks — do as much as necessary and use treats as incentives to get him to walk a little bit longer. If that doesn’t work, try engaging him in activities he likes — maybe he just wants to play tug of war; that’s ok as long as he gets in some activity. Every little bit counts when you’re trying to prevent health problems like heart disease and arthritis.

Canine Comforts We all love a little pampering and so do our pups! Indulge your dog in a few cuddly items to keep him warm on a winter day. A cushioned pet bed keeps him comfortable and a new toy keeps him company. Dogs are known to get attached to things the way humans do — letting them do that with their special toys is just a way we show them we care.

pup-padDog Dousing We don’t like to be dirty. Daily showers are a habit humans don’t want to give up. Dogs feel the need to be clean, too. Even though they’re equipped to clean themselves, it’s good to give them help every once in awhile to get rid of matted fur, dead skin and anything lurking in their coats that they picked up outside. Taking him to the groomer is an efficient way to get your dog clean. Groomers are trained to handle dogs when they’re uncomfortable and you don’t have a mess to clean up at home. However, doing it yourself is fine if you know what you’re getting into. Either way you do it, The American Society to the Prevention of Cruelty of Animals (ASPCA) recommends getting your dog cleaned up every three months.

Frolicking Fidos By nature, dogs like to be around other dogs — they’re pack animals. Setting up playdates with other dogs and going regularly to the dog park where his friends are shows him your love by letting him do the things he loves. Not only that, but getting him out playing with other dogs and people helps him socialize and learn to behave outside the home.

Anyway you show your pup love this Valentine’s Day, let LTD Commodities help! We have ideas and products to make your dog feel special every day of the year.

Items We Adore: Product Picks for Valentine’s Day

Love is in the air! If you haven’t seen any hearts and cupids popping up, you will soon! Valentine’s Day is approaching and, though it’s a day typically dedicated to romance, we can show our love for our family, our homes and ourselves on February 14. So with that in mind, we put together a list of products filled with love that we think you’ll like. Here are this week’s Items We Adore: Product Picks for Valentine’s Day.heart-wreath

Country Hearts Wreath or Garland is the perfect finishing touch for your country home. Both pieces are made of grapevine branches accented with gingham bows, red and cream polyfoam berries and wooden cutouts bearing words of love. Garland, approx. 60″. Wreath, 15″ x 14-1/2″.street-scene

NEW! Add a personalized touch to this street scene wall art to create the perfect gift for an engagement, wedding or anniversary! The romantic black and white image by artist Scott Kennedy features the couple’s names as part of the artwork. The lovers’ embrace and the red heart work together to create a sweet scene. It’s a special gift that can also be ordered with your name and that of your significant other to hang in your own home. Maximum of 15 letters per name. Wooden block mount is a contemporary and frameless way to display a print. Comes ready to hang.heart-charm-bracelet

NEW! Give a gift you know she’ll cherish with a Personalized Five Hearts Name Bracelet. The beautiful bracelet is designed to be engraved with the names of her loved ones. One side of each heart-shaped charm features a single name (up to 9 characters), and the other side contains a list of all the names on the bracelet. Every bracelet comes with 5 charms. If you don’t have 5 names, the front of the extra hearts will be left blank. The bracelet has a hook clasp. Bracelet, 7-1/2″L. Charms, 3/8″ dia., each. Metal.heart-candle-box

 

Wooden Tea Light Candle Box lights up a table or shelf with country sensibility. Each of the 4 glass tea light cups has its own compartment in the box. Light from the flame shines through the themed cutout. Decorative rope handles and a distressed finish add an extra rustic touch. Box, 13-7/8″ x 4″ x 3-1/2″. Candle cups, 3-1/8″ x 2-3/4″ dia., each.heart-gloves

These Kids’ Fleece Text Gloves with Zipper Pocket keep hands warm while operating a touch screen. A zipper pocket on top of each glove is great for holding important items like a house key, money or a note for school. A special fabric on the tip of the thumbs and index fingers is what makes it possible to use a mobile phone or tablet. One size fits most. Polyester. Imported.

 

National Compliment Day: Practice the Power of Praise

Thumbs-up

Yes, it’s another one of those random holidays, but National Compliment Day is worthy of celebration. If you’ve ever been on the receiving end of a compliment from a stranger, you know a compliment’s power to make someone feel awesome. If you’re new to the idea and want to give a loved one a boost, we put together a few ways to practice the power of praise for National Compliment Day.

Unique Blends She’s fascinating and can play the guitar. He’s imaginative and successful. She’s brainy and funny. If your loved one thinks you believe he’s the bee’s knees, he’ll feel special and make you feel special, too.

cakeApplaud Hard Work He’s masterful at cooling a heated situation between the kids. She bakes a strawberry shortcake to embarrass Martha Stewart. His first attempt at building a picnic table was exquisite — draw attention to the things your loved one works hard on. That you notice makes will warm his soul.

Mild Mentionables That oddly shaped freckle he doesn’t know he has, the dimple she can’t see, that one strand of hair that always falls in his eyes — they’re all little things you notice that no one else does. Tell him you love those things about him and they’re part of everything that makes him adorable. Knowing that you like those things is fine, but hearing it will make him feel the way you do when you see that first glimpse of sunshine after a long, gray winter.

Loud & Proud Letting someone know you’re proud of him is a go-to, catch-all compliment — he’ll never get tired of hearing it. But when he hears you say it to someone else, it takes the compliment to a level that can’t be qualified.  baby

Parental Praise The best compliment you can pay someone is telling him he’s a good parent. Praising someone for being able to mold a child into someone inspiring, interesting and productive is no small feat and whoever does it well deserves some recognition — and hearing it is humbling and heartwarming.

While we want others to feel good, at LTD Commodities, we want you to feel good, too. We have hundreds of items to brighten your day. Whether it’s National Compliment Day or it’s Flag Day, shop LTD for products built to inspire.

Cocktails for Your Big Game Party

footballWe still don’t know quite yet which teams are headed to the Big Game,  but we do know that It’s the NFC vs. the AFC and we have some entertaining to do. In 2015, it was the Seattle Seahawks vs the New England Patriots, so we thought we’d use those teams to give you a little party inspiration for the Big Game no matter who ends up on the gridiron.

In addition to rich dips and crunchy chips, cocktails are a must for any Big Game party. Coming up with cocktails to match each team, is more simple than you might think.  Here are a few ideas for cocktails for your Big Game party.

patriots-flagBoston has a number of cocktails that bear its name. While the  Boston Cocktail (3/4 oz gin, 3/4 oz apricot brandy, 1 1/2 tsp grenadine syrup, juice of 1/4 lemon) is the obvious choice because of the name,  Ward 8 has deep roots in the city’s history. It was created in 1898 to honor Boston Politician, Martin Lomasney, and the ward he represented — Ward 8. Here’s how to make it:

  • 2 ounces rye whisky
  • 3/4 ounce lemon juice
  • 3/4 ounce orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon grenadine

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.

It’s the cocktail for someone with a sweet tooth. If beer is your preference for snack accompaniment, Sam Adams is still one of the most preferred beers in the nation, but there are several Boston craft beers you can pick from to serve your guests.

seahawks-pictureIn Seattle, super fans of the Seahawks want The Last Word. By “The Last Word,” we mean the cocktail. It was originally created in Detroit in the prohibition era, but during a cocktail renaissance in Seattle, it found a new home.

Here’s how to make it:

  • ¾ oz. gin
  • ¾ oz. green Chartreuse
  • ¾ oz. maraschino liqueur, like Luxardo
  • ¾ oz. fresh lime juice

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.

Just like Boston, Seahawks love their beer. There are plenty of Seattle beers to choose from but for football fans, the taste of the northwest your guests might be looking for is Rainier Beer.

No matter what teams make it to the Big Game, there are fun ways to mix up cocktails to honor each time and each city as you cheer them on.

You don’t have to have a favorite team to cheer on during the Big Game — football’s most important game can be fun for everyone with the right food, drinks and entertainment. Check out LTD for more products and ideas for your Big Game party!

National Pie Day: Tips for Making a Perfect Pie

 

PieJanuary 23 is National Pie Day — and there really isn’t a better way to warm up the house while we’re stuck in the pits of winter than making a pie. If you’re new to pie-making, pies can be intimidating, but we put together a list of some of the most useful tips for making a perfect pie.

Make It From Scratch The grocery store has loads of pie crusts ready to fill and bake, but none of them compare with what you can make at home. Pie crust only requires four ingredients: flour, salt, fat (butter, shortening or lard); and you don’t have to do a lot of work to turn it into dough for your sweet treats.

PiePea Size Chunks For a flaky crust, when you’re working the flour and butter together — either with your hands or in a food processor — make sure the fat doesn’t break down too much. Making sure your fat is very cold helps with that. For a top crust, the fat chunks should be about the size of peas. The bottom crust should be a mealy dough and the size of the chunks don’t matter.

Wash Though it doesn’t make much impact on how the pie tastes, a wash is very important. It can be an egg wash (beaten with a splash of water), buttermilk or cream to brush on the crust just before baking. Egg wash makes the crust shiny and golden, and cream or milk washes give the pie crust more color and texture to make your pie look more appetizing than it would with no wash.  

Edging Your pie dough should be cold to hold its shape. When you’re rolling out the bottom crust, keep the top crust in the refrigerator until you’re ready to roll. Once the two crusts are sealed and fluted, put your pie in the freezer for at least 30 minutes (if you want to bake it later, you can leave it in the freezer until you’re ready to bake). When you’re ready to bake, cover the edges with foil. Leave it on there for the first 20 minutes of baking. The edge bakes first and without the foil, it will burn before the rest of the pie is ready.

PieCrispy Bottom Taking a bite of cherry pie with a soggy bottom is a bummer, but there are a few methods to make sure your fruit pie doesn’t have a soggy bottom.

  • Cold Filling Let your filling cool before pouring it into your crust.
  • Bread Crumbs Before you pour in your filling, sprinkle bread crumbs in the bottom to create an unintrusive barrier between the moisture in the filling and the pie dough.
  • Pizza Stone Bake your pie on top of a pizza stone. With the weight of the filling, the pizza stone helps the bottom bake at the same rate as the top of the crust.

At LTD Commodities, we want to help you make Pie Day and every day a little bit better! From baking accessories for your culinary ambitions to whimsical decor to make your home brighter for spring, shop LTD for products priced for fun.

Wishful Thinking: Product Picks for An Early Spring

It’s the middle of January and we can’t help but dream about spring! Though the first day of spring isn’t until March 20, we’re holding out hope that our favorite prognosticator will grant us warm weather before then. So, with wishful thinking, we put together a hopeful list of products. Here are this week’s Items We Adore: Product Picks for An Early Spring.

wood-terrariumWood Terrarium Planter makes a beautiful, protective home for herbs and flowers. Resembling a mini greenhouse, its charming weathered look will complement different decor styles. The plastic front and back panels protect the herbs and flowers from direct rain and other weather elements, while the sides are open to let them breathe. The latch hook in the front and the hinged back allow you to open and close it with ease. Herbs, 8-5/8″W x 4-3/8″D x 11-1/4″H. Hope, 10-1/4″W x 5-1/2″D x 13-3/4″H.ltd-ruffle-maxi-skirt

Women’s Knit Ruffle Maxi Skirt instantly dresses up your look. Tiers of ruffles cascade down the entire skirt. Exuding a boho vibe, it’s perfect for a walk on the beach or a day of shopping. Fold-over waist for an easy fit.  Length of the waistband is 5-3/4″ and 35″ from the bottom of the waistband to the bottom of the skirt. Polyester. Machine wash. Made in the USA.

ltd-spring-table-cloth

Add charming critters, fun patterns and vibrant colors to your home with the Welcome Spring Collection. Display appetizers, snacks and more on the Bunny Cake Plate (10-1/2″ dia. x 3-1/4″H). The Treat Jar (6-1/2″W x 10-1/4″D x 12-1/2″H) gives you quick access to a cookie or piece of candy. The Salt & Pepper Shakers (approx. 1-3/4″ x 2-1/2″ x 3-7/8″, each) are a practical addition to your dining area. Serveware and kitchenware, dolomite. All serveware and kitchenware, dishwasher safe. A Pastel Tablecloth adds beautiful colors for cheery table settings. Cotton. Machine care. Our exclusive 3-Pc. Easter Garland Set features 6 ft. of garland held on either side by 2 sand-weighted polyester bunnies (approx. 11-3/8″H, each). Add a pop of color to your walls the Bunny Ribbon Wreath (13-1/2″W x 24″L) with its wire frame that easily folds for storage. Polyester and metal. Ready to hang. All fabric items, imported.spring-quilt

The 3-Pc. Quilt & Sham Set adds a fresh layer of comfort to your bedroom. Each piece features elegant scalloped edges, a patchwork or floral print on one side and a coordinating pattern on the reverse side. King set includes king-sized shams. Full/Queen quilt, 86″ sq. King quilt, 102″W x 86″L. Polyester shell and fill. Machine care. Imported.frog-bird-feeder

Add some fun to your garden while also feeding your feathered friends with an Animal-Shaped Bird Feeder. It features a metallic finish that glistens in the sunlight and mesh sides that the birds can grip to get at the food. When a bird jiggles the feeder, it rings the bell that dangles beneath. Fill it with your own bird seed and hang it from a tree branch or shepherd’s hook using the attached hanger. Frog, 13″ x 10″ x 3″. Ladybug, 14″ x 7″ x 3″. Fish, 16″ x 13″ x 3″. Bird, 11-1/2″ x 8-1/2″ x 2-1/2″. Steel.

Penguin Awareness Day: Fun Facts About Penguins

PenguinsWhile we’re suffering through winter, birds are making their way south, and some are headed to the deep south — Antarctica! Yes, this time of year was designed for penguins. That’s probably why January 20 is designated Penguin Awareness Day — a day that matches their native environment. They’re funny little aquatic birds, so in honor penguins and their special day, here are 11 fun facts about penguins.  

  1. Penguins are not “arctic birds.” The Arctic Circle is at the North Pole, whereas most penguins live south of the equator.
  2. All penguin predators are water-based animals.
  3. Some penguins can stay under water without going up for air for 22 minutes! But those are the exceptions. Most penguins can go 4-5 minutes underwater without taking a breath.
  4. Penguins have a special gland to separate salt from seawater so they can drink it. The salt is expelled through their beaks.Penguins
  5. Penguins are not vegetarians. They make meals out of squid, krill and fish.
  6. Penguins mate in the spring and summer and, even though they have a rough migration, about 80% of the time, penguins return to the same mates year after year.
  7. Most birds have hollow bones to help them fly. Penguins do not have hollow bones; helps them swim fast.
  8. Those cute tuxedo-colored feathers penguins are known for are actually camouflage. When they’re in the water, the black on their backs make them difficult to see from above because they blend in with the dark water. Under water, they’re hard for predators to see because their white bellies match the bright light from the sun.  
  9. Typically, birds shed their feathers throughout the year to get rid of the old feather and grow new ones. But penguins are not typical birds. They have one “catastrophic molt.” That means they lose all of their feathers in one shot. While they regrow their feathers, they gain weight for insulation to stay warm.
  10. Penguin coats are dense with feathers. Emperor penguins have up to 100 feathers per square inch. with four layers to keep them warm.
  11. Baby penguins (chicks) can take three days to break through their shells. To put it in perspective, it takes chickens about a day.Penguins

Just like penguins, LTD Commodities can adapt to every season! Whether you need new blankets to keep you warm on a cold winter night or you’re looking for a breezy dress to fill out your spring wardrobe, shop LTD for unique products at discount prices.

Refresh for the New Year: Tips for Staying Organized

Color reminder note with pin on cork board big idea 2016.

Now that the holidays are over and we’re not focused on entertaining and buying gifts, we can turn our attention to starting off the year organized. It’s never easy to do, but with winter weather keeping us inside, we can tick off a few tasks before spring arrives. Here are 6 tips for staying organized for the new year.

Act Now Beating out the habit of procrastination can put you on the fast track to organizing every facet of your life. This means completing tasks as they arise like doing dishes as you dirty them, putting away laundry as you fold it and putting the cap back on the toothpaste when you’re done with it. These are small tasks that are easy to tackle on their own, but when we let them pile up, it takes a lot more time and energy to get them all completed. We have the power of efficiency at our fingertips, we just have to use it.

ltd-storageCompartmentalize Everything in your home and office needs a spot of its own. Whether it’s gloves in a basket or files in a cabinet, find a place for everything you see scattered about your living and working spaces. When you have a place for things, it takes them out of site to declutter your space and mind. Though these things may not make sound disruptive, they can create mental noise that leads to stress. By putting them in their place, not only will you be more organized, you’ll also be more calm.

Use Your Computer It seems like a no-brainer, but using your computer can probably save you more time and energy than you’re letting it. Accept the electric company’s offer for paperless billing so your house doesn’t get cluttered with useless paper (and you have one less thing to shred!), use a password manager to save you time creating new ones and trying to remember old ones (and they increase your security!) and use calendar alerts for all the tasks you’ve been keeping track of in your head.    

 Create Procedures Most, if not all, of us have bedtime routines like washing our faces or brushing our teeth — these types of good habits can be applied to other parts of our lives to make us more organized and productive, we just have to isolate the activity and come up with a policy that makes sense to complete it. It can be anything from putting your shoes in the basket at the door to washing dishes as you dirty them. Starting good habits is tough, but once they become habits, you’ll discover the work is worth it.  multi-tasking

Once You Start, Don’t Stop When you set out to complete a task, finish it before you start a new one. There are a couple reasons for this one: 1) having several unfinished tasks creates mental and physical clutter — when you complete one task you can put away everything it requires to complete 2) not only does multitasking make us less efficient, but it also damages our brains. When you have a lot on your plate, break up your tasks into digestible pieces and work out one piece at a time. 

Timing is Everything Audit your time both at work and at home. Figure out what periods you’re most productive and then do your most difficult and time-consuming tasks at those times. It saves you a lot of time and frustration in the long run and you’ll ultimately be more relaxed and organized.

LTD Commodities has products and ideas to make this year productive! From storage solutions to gadgets to get your home in order, shop LTD for great products at unbeatable prices.